To knit is to love!
When anyone mentions craft one of the first things that pops into my head is knitting. I was taught to knit as a child by my Granny and I remember taking part in knitted square appeals for charity at Primary School. It was too hard though, I was impatient and my little fingers hurt from the effort of pushing my too tight stitches off the needles so I gave up and didn’t return to knitting until I was 24 and my (at that point future) Mother In Law impressed me so much with her skills and creative aura that I decided to take the needles up once again and I’ve barely put them down since.
I spoke to 14 Folksy sellers who knit and unsurprisingly all but 2 named either their Gran or their Mum as the person who taught them or inspired them to start knitting. There are men who knit out there – Mr Kapow’s been spotted knitting more than once; my Great Uncle Henry regales me with the story of a pair of socks he made for himself while working in Rugby as a young man; it’s rumoured that my Dad at least knows how and I had the pleasure last year of interviewing a charming gent by the name of Mark Sabine, a talented knitter who goes by the name of Mother’s Ruin for my own blog – but it does tend to be something that gets passed down between women.
Often it would seem that knitting invokes closeness with people. Learning to knit from your Nan, Mum or even a friend makes you feel close to her in the same way that lovingly and perhaps laboriously making a gift for someone lets them know how much you care.
Knitting is good for you!
For many of us it is a calming and reflective past time, Alison told me that when she met her friend Sue she suffered very badly from depression and found that crafting helped:
Sue’s enthusiasm for everything craft related inspired me to take up knitting again and with her help and friendship I became a different person! Alison, The Little Knitted House
Valentina of Valjadesign said simply that she is inspired to knit by her children and a love of creating things of beauty. Amen to that!
I’m sure what Heather had to say will ring true with a few people:
My grandmother taught me when I was about 8 or 9 I think. We knitted a dress for my Sindy doll. I didn’t really take it up again until I was in dire need of a destressing activity when I was a teacher – and now I’m a full-time knitter! Heather, Nifty Knits
Paula too uses knitting as a way to relax:
I find it very hard to wind down after a busy day at work, so I sit myself down in front of the telly & knock out a few rows of a scarf or necklace & I find myself slowly calming down. And wine doesn’t really affect the outcome either – it’s handmade & meant to look unique! Paula, Paula’s Creations
Knitting is sexy!
There’s a preconception out there that knitting is for old ladies. Yes. I know. I’ll just give you a second to digest that…
However, with hip books to learn from like Debbie Stoller’s Stitch ‘n Bitch and a general revival in all things craft, it’s pretty gosh darn cool to be totin’ some needles right now! Hip cafe based knitting groups are springing up everywhere and you shouldn’t be surprised to see knitting on public transport at the moment Furthermore, I urge you to do a Google image search for ‘yarn bombing’ or ‘guerrilla knitting’ and marvel at some of the covert work that’s been done around the globe.
Angela used to think that only old ladies knitted when she was was young and enjoyed it:
It was kind of a guilty secret pleasure! Little did I know that quite a few of my friends were also secret knitters – a fact I only recently found out when my best friend listed some of her knitted items for sale online and we all started talking knitting! Angela, Happily Ever Crafter
For Cheryl that perception that only Grans knit is all well and good:
However it now brings the old and young together again like it did when I was little. My young mum was always knitting stuff for us kids a way of getting by with little money but now the old and young sit side by side because it is trendy and a lot of the skills are best learned from the old ladies. My gran is no longer around and I don’t really consider my mum to be an old lady but she is teaching me new knitting stuff all the time. I hope I end up as good as she is. Cheryl, Tiny Inc
Some of the rest of us however might be more inclined to agree with Jay:
Yes, it is. It’s very uncool, no fun at all. Now move along, nothing to see here (hehehehe, less knitters = more lovely wool for us sad addicts!) Jay, Rainbow Knits (I like the way this lady’s mind works!)
Join me (and more of my knitwit sellers) a week on Tuesday when we’ll be looking at how to get started now that you’ve decided to take up knitting!
More about our columnist
Konnie Kapow is a superhero card designer on a mission to save the world from dull and namby pamby greeting cards! Her offbeat sense of humour combined with quirky card designs make her shop a popular destination for card shoppers. Konnie lives in Glasgow with her artist husband Mr Kapow! where they can be found collecting rock n’ roll memorabillia and knitting in bed.